Following our victory over Portsmouth in the Community Shield, I asked the question, tongue in cheek, whether Portsmouth paid off the refs when playing against United. In our past few matches we have seen Carlos Tevez rugby tackled in the box, whilst Cristiano Ronaldo was shoulder charged, without any consequence, then last night, Wayne Rooney had a perfectly good goal ruled out and penalty shout denied.

No wonder they have such a bloody good record against us!

The Guardian: Rooney was wrongly flagged off-side as he sped through to shoot home. Ferguson’s team would have been conscious that Portsmouth had a basis from which to rally.

The MEN: Wayne Rooney finally managed to urge them into providing an improved supply line. He profited when he brilliantly turned Kaboul in the first half but lashed his shot just wide. Then a wrong flag from a linesman cost him his first goal of the season when he clinically stroked a through ball past James.

The Sun: Rooney was incensed when Evra crossed from the goal-line and, before he could move towards the ball, Campbell quite clearly kicked him over. Rooney threw his arms in the air, appealing to both the referee and the linesman, but got absolutely nowhere. The fact that the ball was intercepted by Kaboul before reaching Rooney may have influenced referee Chris Foy’s decision, but a foul is a foul whether the player has the ball or not — as Rooney vainly attempted to explain.

Still, it’s the 3 points that count. It’s just frustrating that the next time United are awarded a favourable decision, much will be made of it, and decisions like those in tonight’s game will be forgotten.

United, 5th in the league, United United 5th in the league… nah, doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.